Xayah, the Rebel never quits and what many see as a weakness she can easily show how open to interpretations it can be. Sometimes there’s a job that requires more than sharp feathers to finish and that’s where Xayah excels. If you find a trail of glowing feathers know that’s she’s nearby and she seldom is alone. If you get distracted by a dazzling someone then it’s probably her other half getting everything ready for her entrance. Therefore, if you need a balanced couple for a specific task know that she’ll be the one taking aim once everyone is where she wants them.
|Concept:||Xayah as an astral assassin.|
|Model:||Major model changes for Xayah and new animated texture for her cloak.|
|Particles:||New particles for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.|
|Animations:||New recall animation.|
|Sounds:||New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.|
|Splash Art:||A solar eclipse behind joins dawn and dusk together; in longwinded and highly metaphorical a way. Regardless, despite how simple it is to have Sun and Moon together surrounded by some stars and clouds it makes for a good match to Xayah and Rakan. They join hands floating on air or space, nothing’s concrete, but with an evocative pose that brings their connection to the forefront; which is the most relevant aspect of this couple. What all the setting lacks in terms of meaning the composition more than makes up for it; a clever choice.
With regards to Xayah she enjoys an effective portrayal. Surfaces are smooth but sometimes waxy, reflections aplenty but subdued and lighting soft but elaborate. It could be said that she shines with an intense yet quiet light; which fits her personality well enough. Her legs are largely omitted and there’s no suggestion of her essential crescent-feathers, sans a timid pattern on her cloak. Her cape and legs are also a bit simply depicted and even diffuse. Regardless, her delicate features and appealing appearance make for a good presentation card.
Rakan follows with equally soft shading, perhaps even softer, and rather dim reflections. While the general feel is not dissimilar to Xayah he seems more diffuse, especially the lower body and torso. The fire hair nicely displays the whims of the flames while making for a credible mane as it faintly lights his cape. Lighting is put to good use in other areas and while the shoulder medallion looks a tad sketchy the overall quality is good. Although not as vibrant, which may be surprising knowing his personality, Rakan makes for a good match to Xayah.
The light they create together is as important as it is mysterious yet gives meaning to them joining hands in the middle of nothing. It could be their salvation from a high fall or just another trick only they can perform, together. Ultimately, their attractive portrayals might set the bar too high for the less detailed and elaborate three-dimensional models. While certain degree of artistic freedom is understandable, there’s the feeling that going from two to three dimensions implies breaching a non-trivial gap. That doesn’t detract from the formidable composition and meaningful way to share a splash art that Xayah and Rakan demonstrate. In spite of some flaws, this is an example of how to allow two champions to shine under the same spotlight. Because of this clever and elegant setup this is a splash art that could join the select group of League of Legends’ best.
|Conclusion:||Although Cosmic Dusk Xayah has an appealing style it’s doesn’t feel truly cosmic and ends up being rather superficial. To start with, the model doesn’t move far from the classic look. In fact, not only are the clothes similar but also the overall appearance as well as features; the gleaming of feathers is changed by the astral texture of the cloak. Cosmic Dusk is more colourful and there’s more gold but the palette is limited and the pale hues aren’t the most attractive either.
That said, the abilities have a nice feel to them. It’s a pity that most of them rely on the same feathers. The feathers are quite nicely designed in the shape of a crescent Sun. However, they monopolise the visual aspect. Surely, the classic ability design is also quite homogeneous but a skin could add extra personality to the abilities and champion; it’s the main aim actually. As is, Cosmic Dusk looks good but adds little.
Sounds fare similarly with twinkling being the major contribution to the aural side. The change is suitable and appealing but, again, limited. It’s like visuals and sounds are defined by a single change that is reused by the whole spectrum of abilities. The recall is more dramatic than actually stellar but the particles add a bit more of stars to the deal.
All added together, Cosmic Dusk Xayah is a good skin but not at its price tier and certainly not the best example as a release skin. There’s too deep a reliance on Classic and the few additions that stand out take precedence over the other shy changes. While Cosmic Dusk Xayah is a skin with appeal it’s also one that doesn’t offer much.
|Concept:||Xayah in an eye-catching heart motif.|
|Model:||New model for Xayah and new animated texture for her cloak.|
|Particles:||New particles for her abilities, auto-attack, joke and recall.|
|Animations:||New animations for her recall and duo recall with Rakan.|
|Sounds:||New sounds for her abilities, auto-attack and recall.|
|Splash Art:||A lake with swans and ripples of a powerful energy: love. Yes, this is how it’s going to be so turn back now if it’s too much sugar; you’ve been warned. The background is simple but appropriate for a tender moment. There’s no doubt that it’s a magical night, or cloudy day because there’s too little setting to extrapolate from there.
Xayah and Rakan join hands and longingly look into each other; a frozen glimpse of the end of their shared recall. The connection runs deep and is, frankly, a good demonstration of what makes these champions special. The perspective manages to give a good view of both. Legs are nowhere to be seen but, up from there, colours are soft, shading is delicate and reflections are dim. Everything seems so soft that even highlights on the reflective surfaces are subdued. There’s also a subtle yet noticeable blur around both champions which doesn’t do them any favours. For example, it collaborates in concealing their distinct feather-like capes.
All that said, there’s no doubt that this is a splash art that lives and breathes by the portrayal. The meaningful connection between Xayah and Rakan is put to the forefront. It’s something intrinsic of them but also relevant to the Valentine’s theme. The rest is simple support. For a presentation card, it’s actually quite good though it could’ve done a better job at showing their appearance.
|Conclusion:||Exchanging her cloak for a feather-styled cape and wearing a dark dress with bronze highlights it can’t be said that Sweetheart Xayah embraces the Valentine spirit. However, the contrast and gradients of colours are quite appealing and suit her no nonsense identity. There’s a shy heart motif in the dress and cape, mainly the latter, which makes it classy instead of overloaded; as in other cases.
Particles don’t change the fact that they are based on her new heart-shaped feathers. They come and go with blue-golden trails and glows which are quite eye-catching. The contrast between the dark blue and the brilliant gold manages to beat the monotonous design by making each feather glow with an appealing outline.
Sounds are simple but fitting: they add harp tones to auto-attacks before throwing a feather. For abilities the whole ability is supported by the harp. The choice of instrument is an elegant hint at the theme at hand. It also means that nothing stands out and the feel isn’t that far from classic. Regardless, there’s a fine change to the aural landscape.
The recall is the noteworthy part. When alone, Xayah merely greets some small animals. Such a Snow White reference seems out of the blue; though it bears some relation to her bird nature. The one that stands out is the waltz she dances with Rakan. It’s direct and simple but also meaningful and evocative of their relationship. It’s not enough to elevate the skin to something grandiose. Still, it’s certainly a good addition.
All added together, Sweetheart Xayah is thin on Valentine’s spirit but that’s probably not her thing anyway. When it comes to style, the balance between dark colours and bright glows makes the skin appealing; with subtle harp support. The shared recall with Rakan is a fine addition with more meaning than show. Actually, there’s much that feels familiar with regards to the classic counterpart but the contrast of colours manages to make the skin distinct. This all that is offered may not be much, to be fair, but it’s good.
As a release skin Cosmic Dusk Xayah isn’t the best exponent of what the Rebel can achieve. The skin has some nice visual and aural touches but they are limited. Given the extent of the price tier there’s ample room to further define the theme. However, it ends up being truncated to a minimal set of appealing changes. With so little to offer beyond Classic, Cosmic Dusk Xayah is a skin with features to like but not many.
Thin on Valentine spirit but appealing nonetheless, Sweetheart Xayah is a good skin. The contrast of dark colours and bright glows, with the subtle support of harp tunes, is the main feature. The dual recall with Rakan is the only special addition because of their relationship. There’s nothing extraordinary in the skin but it’s good.